North East Valley DGP eNews

No 1043: December 9, 2010
eNews is a weekly electronic newsletter sent to all GP practices (with email addresses) within the NEV catchment. The aim is to provide up to date information relevant to GPs and to disseminate the latest activities and resources from the division. All feedback and enquiries welcome and should be addressed to Patty Marshall. You can also visit our website at:
To subscribe to eNews click on subscribe. To be removed from the eNews distribution list click on Unsubscribe


In this issue:

Chronic Disease Management            GP journal highlights chronic heart failure, Integrated Chronic Disease Management Online Clearinghouse

HMR                                                      A pharmacist in general practice? Deaths involving contraindicated and inappropriate combinations of serotonergic drugs

Immunisation                                       Chain of protection, Pandemic vaccination program ends soon     

Information Management                  Medical Director Tips

Items of interest                                  Name change, Specialist Health Care, GP Network News  

Women’s Health                                  New Obstetrician & Gynaecologist             

Positions vacant/wanted                            

Fun stuff                                                        


Chronic Disease Management

GP journal highlights chronic heart failure

Australian Family Physician, the flagship journal of The Royal Australian College of General Practitioners (RACGP), features a range of clinical, viewpoint and research articles focusing on key issues in general practice today. The December 2010 edition focuses on the impact of chronic heart failure and includes the following feature articles: Heart failure management; Chronic heart failure; Echocardiography in heart failure; End stage heart failure patients.

All articles are available to read online at


Integrated Chronic Disease Management Online Clearinghouse

Newest Resources

·         The Australian Lung Foundation Pulmonary Rehabilitation Toolkit

·         The COPD-X Plan: Australian and New Zealand Guidelines for the Management of COPD

·         An employee's guide to diabetes in the workplace

·         Healthy eating: a pictorial guide



Back to top


Home Medicines Review

A pharmacist in general practice?

We are looking for general practitioners, pharmacists and other staff interested in taking part in a study investigating multidisciplinary strategies to improve medication use in primary care patients. As a participant in this study, you will be invited to share your thoughts in one-to-one interviews or focus groups. An exploration of stakeholder opinions on collaborative patient care delivered by general practitioners, pharmacists and other primary health care professionals will take place. Your experience and opinions will be greatly valued and will assist us in developing new ways to improve medication use among primary care patients. You will receive an honorarium for your time.

For more information, please see the explanatory document or contact Edwin Tan on 9903 9170 or email  or talk to Dr Jenny Gowan on 0417 506 944  


Deaths involving contraindicated and inappropriate combinations of serotonergic drugs

Are your patients taking SSRIs and Tramadol? Dr Jenny Gowan, consultant pharmacist at NEVDGP reports that this is quite commonly found when undertaking Medication reviews.   

A  Victorian study examined all fatalities from 2002 through to 2008 involving the use of certain serotonin active drugs (tramadol, venlafaxine, fluoxetine, sertraline, citalopram and paroxetine). More than 1,000 were identified of which 326 cases formed the basis of this study. These cases involved contraindicated or inappropriate drug combinations that can lead to adverse drug reactions (ADRs) and subsequent fatal toxicity. Of these, 46% were drug-related, 35% were a result of natural disease and 13% were classified as external injury cases. Int J Legal Med (online 1 Dec)

Information about Medication reviews from Jenny Gowan at NEVDGP 9496 4333 or


Back to top



Chain of protection

An interesting website with short videos, resources and links related to immunisation – click here.


Pandemic vaccination program ends soon

The pandemic flu vaccine Panvax® H1N1 is still freely available for all Australians until the final remaining stock expires on 31 December 2010. This year, 71 percent of all notifications for influenza have been the pandemic (H1N1) 2009 strain. Eighty percent of influenza hospitalisations have been associated with pandemic (H1N1) 2009.

Those who have not been immunised against the H1N1 virus or had their seasonal flu vaccine can take advantage of the free vaccine until the end of this year. This might be very important for those travelling to the northern hemisphere this festive season.


Back to top


Information Management

Medical Director Tip - Transferring a doctor’s recalls to another doctor

When a doctor leaves the practice it is a good idea to transfer that doctor’s outstanding recalls to another doctor.

  1. Open HCN Maintenance.
  2. Under Database Tasks select Medical Director.
  3. Double click on Merge Search Lists.
  4. Click on the Recall List (Dr).
  5. In the left panel click on the departing doctor’s name and in the right panel select the doctor to whom you are transferring the recalls (or it maybe the nurse).
  6. Click on the Change button.


This weeks IM problem - Most commonly asked question

Question: Just curious, what is the most commonly asked question?

Answer: From within the division it is usually something to do with LetterWriter, hence my “LetterWriter Tips” book is 28 pages long. When I meet GPs outside the division it is “Do you have a book of tips for Best Practice?” The answer, by the way, is “No” (only one practice within the division uses BP).


Back to top


Items of Interest

Northern Health Access BECC and BHS Intake Unit name change

Northern Health would like to announce a name change for the Continuing Care Intake & Access Unit at Bundoora Extended Care and Broadmeadows Health Service:

Access BECC at Bundoora Extended Care Centre and the Intake Unit at Broadmeadows Health Service will be known as:

·        Continuing Care Access Unit – BECC. Phone: 9495 3109; Fax: 9467 8698

·        Continuing Care Access Unit – BHS. Phone: 8345 5127; Fax: 8345 5353

Everything else remains the same – contact details, referral criteria, referral processes, and responsive staff. Should you require any clarification, please contact:

Maureen Sorahan, Manager, Continuing Care Access Unit on 9495 3109.


Specialist Health Care

Bundoora Specialist Health Care and Bundoora Health has a wide variety of Specialist medical services and Allied Health professionals providing outstanding levels of patient care to the community. We also have the largest group of private consulting Geriatricians in Melbourne. Please see your GP for a referral to our range of Specialists. More information can be found at our website at


GP Network News

This week’s edition includes: Sensible Decision on after-hours GP care, Get connected, stay respected: guide to online professionalism, e-Health - Electronic Health Record, Pandemic Warning Decreased, Medicare provider number legislation review, Diabetes Advisory Group, Easier access for reporting adverse events, Nurse-led walk-in clinic - no relief for hospital A&E


Back to top


Women’s Health

New Obstetrician & Gynaecologist commencing private practice

Dr Jean Woo - Obstetrician & Gynaecologist MBBS (Melb), FRANZCOG is based at Mitcham Private Hospital, covering All aspects of Obstetric care; Laparoscopic gynaecologic surgery; Diagnosis and Management of Cervical Dysplasia; Prolapse; Ovarian cysts; Menstrual disorders. Public Appointment: Royal Women’s Hospital. Languages spoken other than English: Mandarin. Contact: Mitcham Private Consulting Suites, 23 Doncaster East Road Mitcham. Appointments: (03) 9210 3146 Fax: (03) 9210 3139 Pager: (03) 9387 1000 Mobile: 0423 579 254


Back to top


Positions vacant/wanted

Please note: only new ads or resubmitted ads will be posted here. All other ads can be found on the website


Positions vacant


Diamond Creek – VR GP full/part-time. Prefer female with obstetric interest. Doctor owned family practice, friendly, supportive management, fully accredited, computerised teaching practice. Full time nursing support plus support from child/adult psychiatrist, clinical psychologist, family therapist, physio and pathology collection. Regular visiting specialist general, plastic & orthopaedic surgeons. No after hours, one Saturday/month. Excellent remuneration. Contact Lina, Practice Manager, on 9438 1911 or 0407 119 780


Ivanhoe - VR GP FT or PT required to work in this GP operated accredited medical centre. A friendly and supportive team environment in this computerised medical centre with Psychologists, Physiotherapist, Podiatrist, Dietician, Nursing staff and Radiology on site. No after hour’s, family friendly, flexible hours. Please contact John or Ken on 03 9497 1188.


Northcote – F/t P/T VR GP or Subsequent Trainee GP position. Fully accredited, computerised, long established doctor owned practice in a new purpose built facility with a fabulous work environment. Ancillary Health, Pharmacy and Pathology services on site. Inquiries Diane Cronin (Practice Manager) 9481 1214. Visit our website

Practice Staff

Heidelberg - Part-time medical receptionist require. Start date negotiable. Rates negotiable. Please call 0401 032 678


Prahran - Practice Manager wanted. Excellent opportunity to join this well established group general practice which is ideally located to train/trams and shops. Professional Development. Email: or contact Galaxy Medical Recruitment on Ph: (03) 8720 7888


Parkville - Medical Secretary wanted. Private Specialist rooms seeking an experienced Medical Secretary for 2 x days per week Mondays and Fridays. Work/Life Balance.

Email: or contact Galaxy Medical Recruitment on Ph: (03) 8720 7888


Back to top




Marriage is like a pack of cards.

In the beginning all you need is two hearts and a diamond.

By the end, you’ll wish you had a club and a spade.


Back to top




And remember


            The trouble with, "A place for everything and everything in its place" is that there's always more everything than places.